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USFWS wants ESA listing for whitebark pine, "foundation" species in many western North American PAs

Not quite a decade after agreeing whitebark pines were a species in need of Endangered Species Act protection, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service now is proposing to list the iconic trees as threatened under the act.

The pines, which are viewed as a "foundation species," grow high in the upper reaches of parks such as Yellowstone, Grand Teton, Glacier, Yosemite, Crater Lake, and Kings Canyon. Roughly 70 percent of the species' range lies within the United States, according to Fish and Wildlife staff, with the remaining 30 percent in Canada, where the trees can be found in all of that country's mountain national parks - Waterton Lakes, Banff, Kootenay, Yoho, Mount Revelstoke, Glacier, and Jasper.

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